Do you know any “know-it-alls?” You know, the person who insists that they know your area of expertise better than you do? It is an awful characteristic.
That day on the beach, Jesus probably seemed like a know-it-all. Here was a teacher with a sizable crowd gathered around him. He decided that the best way to speak to the crowd was to ask one of the fishermen nearby to let him teach from his boat. While Jesus wouldn’t have been completely unknown to the fishermen – John was one of the men and he was a follower of John the Baptist – he also wasn’t in a position to do anymore than request a favor. They obliged him and listened to his words. They were motivated enough by these words that Peter even calls Jesus, “Master.” However, that is only in protest because of Jesus’ insistence on taking the relationship to the next level. This is where the “know-it-all” thing comes in to play.
After teaching he says, “Let’s go fishing.” It couldn’t have come at a worse time. The guys were in the midst of cleaning up from an unsuccessful night of work when Jesus disrupted them. And now he was not only asking them to go out for a little bit more work, he was asking them to undo the work that they had done. Knowing what we know about Peter, it must have taken tremendous restraint for him not to say what was really on his heart. Like the mechanic, obliging the customer who “just knows” that this is the problem with the car, all Peter musters is, “Are you sure this is a good idea?”
What happens is nothing short of miraculous. Their haul of fish for that day was enough for Peter to realize that there is more to life than what he thought. He had lived for fish. He was an expert. This Teacher had taught him an invaluable lesson: God had a plan for him that was bigger than fish. This Teacher was an expert in life. His heart open, Jesus calls him to service for the Kingdom.
Jesus is still calling. He wants you to be in the same business. It has been a long “night,” will you put out your nets?